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Tuks still focused on promotion despite being second on the log

'We still have a chance, we are ready for anything'

Athenkosi Tsotsi Sports Reporter
Tlisane Motaung, coach of University of Pretoria.
Tlisane Motaung, coach of University of Pretoria.
Image: Sydney Mahlangu/BackpagePix

University of Pretoria head coach Tlisane Motaung is hopeful his team will secure promotion to the land of milk and honey when they play their last game of the season against Hungry Lions in the GladAfrica Championship on Sunday at the Tuks Stadium. 

AmaTuks are in the running to gain automatic promotion to the DStv Premiership. However, they are not in pole position, with Richards Bay leading the race for promotion with 53 points while the Pretoria-based side is second with 51 points. 

Richards Bay will welcome Cape Town Spurs at the King Goodwill Zwelithini Stadium. Pitso Dladla's side need a win to secure their place in the top flight. A draw will also be enough, provided AmaTuks lose or draw. Should AmaTuks win and Richards Bay draw, then goal difference will come into play. The Natal Rich Boyz currently have a three-goal advantage. 

With all the permutations involved and what's a stake, a status in the cash cow DStv Premiership, Motaung elaborated on how things were in his camp ahead of the big day. 

"It's mixed feeling, excitement and anxiousness. The fact is we still need to do the job on Sunday. We need to win and expect results to go in our favour on the other side," said Motaung. 

"Everyone is behind the team, they're excited with the milestone of being second at this stage. We have never finished in the top five since we got relegated. It's really exciting for us. We are hoping to go up and test ourselves against the best. 

"They have worked hard, they know what's at stake. It's close for them to the land of milk and honey. They will do their best to help the team win this weekend," he said. 

With their destiny not in their hands going into the last day, should they fall short of automatic promotion, AmaTuks know are guaranteed another go at it through the PSL playoffs. Should they go to the playoffs, they will do battle with the team that finished in 14th place in the DStv Premiership and Cape Town All Stars. 

"From the beginning of the season we were planning on getting automatic promotion. At this stage, Richards Bay are the ones that have control going to the last match, they need a win to confirm. So for us, if we win it, it'll be exciting. 

"If we go the route of playoffs, we'll go for it. We still have a chance. We are ready for anything that comes our way. We are still focused on automatic promotion. If we get it on Sunday it'll be exciting, if not we go straight to the playoffs and compete for promotion," Motaung said. 

Fixtures 

Sunday (all times 3pm): Cape Town All Stars v JDR Stars, Idas Valley Sports Ground; Richards Bay v Cape Town Spurs, King Goodwill Zwelithini Stadium; Pretoria Callies v Jomo Cosmos, Lucas Masterpieces Moripe Stadium; Venda Football Academy v Free State Stars, Thohoyandou Stadium; Platinum City Rovers v Black Leopards, Profert Olën Park; University of Pretoria v Hungry Lions, Tuks Stadium; Polokwane City v Tshakhuma, Old Peter Mokaba Stadium; Uthongathi v TS Sporting, Princess Magogo Stadium.

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